BMW 5-Series Touring, an efficient station-wagon

Quite often, we think that cars have to be small to be green, with less weight, and less frontal area for better aerodynamics. That’s fine for young singles but that doesn’t suit families. You need space for kids and their tons of stuff. This is where station-wagons or minivans come handy. There will always be a big market for those cars, and manufacturers have to work harder to make them green, or at least greener. We think BMW has a done a pretty good job with its new 5-Series Touring.

The trunk capacity is 560 liters with the rear seats up, and 1670 litres when they’re down. More than enough for most families, even if it’s less than the Mercedes E-class equivalent. Back seats fold flat in a 40:20:40 arrangement which is unique in the segment, and handy when you’ll need to carry some long item. A self-leveling rear suspension will also help if your stuff is heavy. Best engine is the 2-liter diesel, it makes 184 hp and delivers 44 MPG according to european test measures. Unfortunately, it shall not come in the US, but the 3-liter diesel shall. With 245 hp and 400 lbs/ft, this is one strong unit that takes this family car up to 150 mph. Welcome to the the german way of making station-wagons.

Top speed shall be lower in the US due to the use of different tires, but fuel economy shall remain the same. It’s advertised at 37 MPG on the european test cycle. This new BMW wagon will come at the very end of the year at prices that should not change much over the current one.